Bettina Mahlert Dr. Bettina Mahlert

Institut für Soziologie - Universität Innsbruck

Universitätsstrasse 15, A-6020 Innsbruck

Raum w 2.12

Tel.: +43 512 507-73438


Curriculum Vitae

  • Habilitation (2019), Venia legendi Soziologie, RWTH Aachen
  • Promotion (Dr. phil) (2013), Soziologie, Universität Bielefeld
  • Mag. Artium (2004) Politische Wissenschaften, Ludwig-Maxilimians-Universität München
  • Studium Politische Wissenschaften, Soziologie, Ethnologie, Volkswirtschaftslehre, Ludwig-Maxilimians-Universität München

  • soziologische Theorie
  • politische Soziologie (insb. internationale Entwicklungspolitik und globale Kooperation)
  • Soziologie (globaler) sozialer Ungleichheit
  • Systemtheorie, post- und dekoloniale Perspektiven
  • Universität Innsbruck Institut für Soziologie: (aktuell)
  • Universität Duisburg-Essen Käte Hamburger Kolleg/Centre for Global Cooperation Research: Research Fellow (2018-2019)
  • Universidade Estadual do Norte Fluminense Darcy Ribeiro (UENF), Laboratório de Gestão e Políticas Públicas (LGPP): Gastwissenschafterin (2018)
  • RWTH Aachen University Institut für Soziologie: Wiss. Mitarbeiterin (PostDoc) (2013-2019)
  • Universität Bielefeld Institut für Weltgesellschaft: Geschäftsführerin (2009-2012)
  • Universität Bielefeld Fakultät für Soziologie: Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin (2007-2012)
  • Fachhochschule für öffentliche Verwaltung Münster: Lehrbeauftrage (2005-2006)
  • Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft/Universität Bielefeld Graduiertenkolleg "Weltgesellschaft und globale Strukturmuster: Promotionstipendiatin (2004-2007)


  • Mahlert, Bettina (2023): Talcott Parsons (1902-1979).In: Endreß, Martin; Rampp, Benjamin: Politische Soziologie. Handbuch für Wissenschaft und Studium. Baden Baden: Nomos Verlag, ISBN 978-3-8487-4836-5 (Access)
  • Freistein, Katja; Mahlert, Bettina; Quack, Sigrid; Unrau, Christine (2022): Imagining Pathways for Global Cooperation. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. ISBN 978-1-80220-580-0. (access)

  • Freistein, Katja; Mahlert, Bettina; Quack, Sigrid; Unrau, Christine (2022): Creating, challenging, and changing pathways for cooperation through imagination. In: Freistein, Katja; Mahlert, Bettina; Quack, Sigrid; Unrau, Christine: Imagining Pathways for Global Cooperation. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, ISBN 978-1-80220-580-0, S. 229 – 251. (access)

  • Freistein, Katja; Mahlert, Bettina; Quack, Sigrid; Unrau, Christine (2022): Imagining pathways for global cooperation: an introduction. (Einleitung) In: Freistein, Katja; Mahlert, Bettina; Quack, Sigrid; Unrau, Christine: Imagining Pathways for Global Cooperation. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, ISBN 978-1-80220-580-0, S. 1 - 28. (access)

  • Mahlert, Bettina (2022): From per capita income to the Human Development Index: a pathway for imagining development through numbers. In: Freistein, Katja; Mahlert, Bettina; Quack, Sigrid; Unrau, Christine: Imagining Pathways for Global Cooperation. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, ISBN 978-1-80220-580-0, S. 188 - 208. (access)
  • Mahlert, Bettina (2021): Norms, Interests, and Desirable Futures. Exploring Contemporary Political Upheavals through the Voluntaristic Theory of Action. In: Trevino, A. Javier; Staubmann, Helmut: Routledge International Handbook of Talcott Parsons Studies. London; New York [u.a.]: Routledge, S. 183 - 195. (access)

  • Mahlert, Bettina (2021): Needs and Satisfiers: A Tool for Dealing with Perspectivity in Policy Analysis. In: The European Journal of Development Research 33(6): 1455 - 1474. (access)

  • Mahlert, Bettina (2021): Addressing Parsons in Sociological Textbooks: Past Conflict, Contemporary Readers, and Their Future Gains. In: The American Sociologist 52(1): 88 - 106. (access)
  • Mahlert, Bettina; Kron, Thomas (2020): Methodologischer Kosmopolitismus in der Ungleichheitssoziologie. In: Römer, Oliver; Boehncke, Clemens; Holzinger, Markus (Eds.): Soziologische Phantasie und kosmopolitisches Gemeinwesen. Perspektiven einer Weiterführung der Soziologie Ulrich Becks. Sonderband 24 Soziale Welt: Zeitschrift für sozialwissenschaftliche Forschung, 156-179. DOI: 10.5771/9783845288376-156. (access)

  • Mahlert, Bettina (2020): In Honour of Amartya Sen, Initiator of Global Cooperation Par Excellence. Blog 18.10.2020, Käte Hamburger Kolleg/Centre for Global Cooperation Research, Universität Duisburg Essen. (access)

  •  Mahlert, Bettina (2020): Poverty, Wealth, and Aid: A Sociological Perspective. In: Beck, Valentin; Hahn, Henning; Lepenies, Robert (Eds.): Dimensions of Poverty. Measurement, Epistemic Injustices, Activism. New York: Springer, 177 - 193. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-31711-9_11. (access)

Gesamte Publikationsliste auf ORCID

"Enhancing the Quality of Sociology Postgraduate Teaching and Learning through Staff Exchange and Collaboration among Three Universities (2021-2024)  

This projects comprises a three-year collaboration between nine lecturers from Sociology Departments of Debre Markos University in Ethiopia, University of Lagos in Nigeria and University of Innsbruck in Austria. Its overall goal is to develop high-quality, decolonial and contextually adequate teaching in the postgraduate programs at the three institutions. Key elements of the overall collaborative process are development of curricula, peer-feedback, trainings, development of courses and joint teaching.

Project partners:

  • University of Debre Markos, Ethiopia
  • University of Lagos, Nigeria

Team members at Innsbruck:

  • MAHLERT, Bettina, Ass.-Prof. Dr.
  • MÜLLER KMET, Bernadette, Mag. Dr.
  • SCHERMER, Markus, Univ.-Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr.



MAHLERT, Bettina, Ass.-Prof. Dr.

Decoloniality of Research and Learning Methods in the Global South: A Transdisciplinary Book Project (2021-2023) 

In the Global South, ‘coloniality’ has long been associated with political rule over subordinated countries . Struggles for ‘decoloniality’ have evolved from the undoing of colonial rule, to the even more fundamental challenge of freeing knowledge, practice, and culture from deeper worldwide concentrations of incumbent power. In keeping with the more expansive ambitions of the Sustainable Development Goals, a decolonisation framework thus encompasses some of the most profound and pervasive critiques of globalising structures and their conditioning effects in every setting . Accordingly, the neglected imperative to ‘decolonise methodologies’ in research and policy appraisal, embodies some of the most important and intractable challenges in this field – offering crucial opportunities for thinking, knowing, and doing alike.

The aim of this book project is therefore to explore how methods for informing policy decisions and wider political debates can enable learning, enrich knowledge, enhance practice and nurture more emancipatory outcomes in the Global South. As such, the book equally addresses issues of epistemological theory, policy practice and wider politics. In the theoretical strand of discussion, the book explains how methods have been used to provide learning opportunities through critical pedagogies, scholarly activism, and transdisciplinary training. The practice strand explains how these theories have been put into use to engage, challenge, and shift prevailing power gradients. The wider political strand identifies crucial cross-cutting qualities in various relevant methods and explains how related attributes have – both as understanding and as practice – contributed to heuristics of decoloniality. Individual chapters variously centre on specific cases of critical pedagogy or subaltern epistemology that clearly demonstrate how these three aspects (theory, practice, politics) unfold for methodological decoloniality.

The book argues that it is only by decolonising methodologies in this way, that crucial traction can be enacted to transform the Global South towards Sustainability. The project is led by African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS, in collaboration with University of Innsbruck (UIBK), and University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU).

Team members at the University of Innsbruck:

  • Eric Burton
  • Andreas Exenberger
  • Bettina Mahlert
  • Bernadette Müller Kmet

Project Partners:

  • African Centre for Technology Studies, Nairobi (project leadership)
  • University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU), Wien



MÜLLER KMET, Bernadette, Mag. Dr


VO Einführung in soziologische Perspektiven und Denkweisen
(BA Soziologie, Universität Innsbruck)

Seminar mit Bachelorarbeit
(BA Soziologie, Universität Innsbruck)

VO & SE Macht-, Staats-, und Demokratietheorien
(MA Soziale und politische Theorie, Universität Innsbruck)

VO & SE Systemische Sozialtheorien
(MA Soziale und politische Theorie, Universität Innsbruck)

VO Einführung in die Soziologie
(Philosophisch-Theologische Hochschule Brixen)


  • Soziologische Theorie, insb. Systemtheorie
  • Soziologie sozialer Ungleichheit
  • Politische Soziologie, insbes. globale Entwicklungspolitik
  • Diskurslinien globaler Entwicklungspolitik in wissenssoziologischer Perspektive
  • Soziale Ungleichheit in biographischer Perspektive: Beispiel Wissenschaftskarrieren
  • Räumliche Mobilität als Dimension sozialer Ungleichheit
  • Onlinepraktiken von Forscher:innen
  • Erwerb von Kompetenzen in soziologischer Theorie
  • Sarah von Karger: "Diaspora & Entwicklung. Das Potenzial von Diasporaorganisationen als EntwicklungsakteurInnen"
  • Mathias Weiss: "Geoengineering vs. Zivilgesellschaft"

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